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WorldNorth Korea's harsh human rights record could undermine US nuclear deal, UN official says

04:30  12 january  2019
04:30  12 january  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

September 2017 nuclear test triggers 2019 earthquake in North Korea

September 2017 nuclear test triggers 2019 earthquake in North Korea North Korea's sixth nuclear test was so powerful that it's still triggering earthquakes more than a year later. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); South Korea's Meteorological Administration (KMA) said a small quake that hit in North Korea's North Hamgyong province Wednesday was induced by the September 2017 underground detonation of a nuclear device.

U . N . human rights official says any deal would remain 'fragile' if Pyongyang does not address issues of political prisoners, enslavement. Please read the rules before joining the discussion. North Korea ' s harsh human rights record could undermine US nuclear deal , UN official says .

A top UN official says the “ human rights situation at the moment has not changed on the ground in North This undated picture released from North Korea ' s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) via Afp can not independently verify the authenticity, location, date

North Korea's harsh human rights record could undermine US nuclear deal, UN official says© Provided by USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc. A balloon thrown by a North Korean defector containing a colored liquid bursts on a portrait of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during a rally protesting North Korea Wednesday, March 30, 2016, in Seoul, South Korea.

SEOUL  — As momentum builds for another summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the harsh reality of North Korean human rights issues threatens to undermine any potential peace or denuclearization agreements, a key United Nations official warned on Friday.

Tomás Ojea Quintana, U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in North Korea, told reporters that any deal would be “fragile” if North Korea’s dismal human rights record is not part of the equation.

'Missed opportunity' if summits ignore N. Koreans' rights: UN official

'Missed opportunity' if summits ignore N. Koreans' rights: UN official A senior UN official warned Friday it would be a "missed opportunity" if diplomatic talks with North Korea this year did not address human rights, urging Seoul and Washington to highlight the issue. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); The impoverished but nuclear-armed nation stands accused by United Nations investigators of "systematic, widespread and gross" human rights violations that range from rape, torture, extrajudicial killings to running political prisoner camps.

North Korea ' s woeful human rights record is one topic that is yet to come up - and it' s likely to remain that way. The UN says North Koreans live under The economy is also strictly controlled and the government funnels money into its nuclear and missile programme despite widespread shortages of

US forces in Korea said they had not received updated guidance on the matter. “In coordination with our ROK [Republic of Korea ] partners, we will continue Trump was repeatedly asked after the summit about North Korea ’ s appalling human rights record . He said he had raised the issue with Kim, but

“Any accord that the parties could reach will remain fragile unless human rights issues are not discussed and unless there is a plan how to address that situation in North Korea,” he said.

Quintana’s was on a research trip to South Korea this week to gather material for a report that he will present to the U.N. Human Rights Council in March. He met with government officials and members of civil society and interviewed recent defectors from North Korea.

The human rights issue was sidelined during Kim’s summits last year with Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, but Quintana said it is vital that it becomes part of the dialogue this year.

“It will be a missed opportunity in 2019 if human rights is not addressed by all the parties, most importantly the government of (North) Korea,” he said.

Pompeo to hold talks with North Korea this week: South Korean paper

Pompeo to hold talks with North Korea this week: South Korean paper U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is about to hold high-level talks in Washington D.C. with North Korean senior official Kim Yong Chol on Thursday or Friday, and both sides are fine-tuning details, a South Korean newspaper said. The North Korean official is likely to meet President Donald Trump as well, the Chosun Ilbo said on Tuesday, citing an unnamed diplomatic source familiar with the talks between the United States and North Korea. Asked about the South Korean newspaper report, a State Department official said, "We don’t have any meetings to announce." The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

North Korea ’ s firing of 23 missiles during 16 tests and its sixth nuclear test in 2017 sent tensions between the In 2017, North Korea undertook limited re-engagement with some UN human rights mechanisms, including the Harsh punishments apply to North Koreans forcibly returned by China

In exchange for North Korea ending its nuclear weapons program, the United States agreed to normalize “With the collapse of the Soviet Union, North Korea lost its main protector,” Georgetown University “What does it have that can counter conventional US power? The answer is obvious

Pyongyang has not allowed Quintana or other international human rights inspectors to visit the country.

The U.N. official said human rights conditions have not improved in North Korea despite progress on the international diplomatic front in 2018, a year that saw Kim Jong Un hold summits with Trump and Moon.

“The fact is that with all the positive developments the world has witnessed in the past year, it is all the more regrettable that the reality for human rights on the ground remains unchanged and continues to be extremely serious,” Quintana said.

North Korea’s human rights abuses were detailed in a 2014 U.N. Commission of Inquiry report that found crimes against humanity including murder, enslavement, torture, sexual violence and persecution on political, religious and gender grounds.

Last month, the U.N. passed a resolution condemning the North’s “longstanding and ongoing systematic, widespread and gross violations of human rights.”

Pompeo's North Korea counterpart arrives in Beijing: South Korea's Yonhap

Pompeo's North Korea counterpart arrives in Beijing: South Korea's Yonhap North Korea's top envoy involved in talks with the United States arrived in Beijing on Thursday and is thought to be en route to Washington, South Korean wire service Yonhap said on Thursday. U.S. and South Korean media previously quoted unidentified sources as saying U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior North Korean official Kim Yong Chol were expected to meet in the U.S. capital on Friday to discuss a second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

HANOI, Vietnam — When he vowed to “solve” the North Korea problem just before his inauguration two years ago, President Trump made clear he meant eliminating its nuclear arsenal. But on the eve of a second meeting with the North Korean leader, Kim Jong- un

At first, the Trump administration said the North must give up all enrichment of uranium, which can fuel not only bombs but reactors that illuminate cities. Dr. Hecker noted that the decontamination and decommissioning of a single plant that handles radioactive materials could take a decade or more.

In a 2018 report, Amnesty International claimed that North Korea held up to 120,000 political prisoners in camps, where forced labor and torture are practiced.

While North Korea has seen increased economic development under Kim, particularly in Pyongyang, the capital, much of the country’s population still lacks basic rights like freedom of movement or speech, Quintana said.

“The whole country is a prison,” he quoted one North Korean refugee as saying.

President Moon said Thursday that a North Korea-U.S. summit would “take place soon.” Trump said that he expected to announce the location for the summit “in the not-too-distant future.”

Kim pledged this week to pursue a summit with Trump “to achieve results that will be welcomed by the international community,” Chinese state media reported during the North Korean leader’s visit to Beijing.

A second Trump-Kim summit would seek to kick start a diplomatic process that has stalled out since their June meeting in Singapore.

That meeting produced a declaration stating that North Korea would work toward a “complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” but details on timing and the meaning of the agreement remain vague.

North Korean official reportedly heading to US for talks

North Korean official reportedly heading to US for talks A senior North Korean official has arrived in Beijing, reportedly en route to the United States for talks ahead of a possible second summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. South Korea's Yonhap news agency said that Kim Yong Chol had arrived at Beijing airport on Thursday and was expected to leave for Washington later in the day. Kim Yong Chol is a former North Korean spy chief who has been holding talks with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

A senior administration official said the United States had raised concerns about smuggling with Russia and had previously designated Russian The United States or its allies could then call on that nation to inspect the ship’ s cargo to determine whether it violated existing United Nations sanctions.

The United States and the United Nations had increased sanctions on North Korea in 2017, after the country carried out a series of nuclear and ballistic missile tests. The measures have created economic difficulties for North Korea . President Donald Trump speaks as Sec of State Mike Pompeo looks on

Pyongyang continues to look for relief from punishing international sanctions while Washington is holding out for complete denuclearization first, sticking to its “maximum pressure” strategy on the economic and diplomatic fronts.

North Korea has been eager to pursue economic projects with the South, such as connecting their railroad systems and reopening a jointly run factory park in its border town of Kaesong, but such projects cannot move further until the U.S.-led sanctions on North Korea are eased.

Quintana warned that a continuing lack of human rights in North Korea will be a deterrent for economic development.

“We know there is no compliance with international labor standards,” Quintana said. “Any countries hoping to engage or invest in North Korea will have to bear in mind that basic human rights standards are not respected.”

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: North Korea's harsh human rights record could undermine US nuclear deal, UN official says

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